Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 2: New hinge and larger screens open new possibilities

Samsung has taken the wraps off its third foldable phone, the Galaxy Z Fold 2 5G during the virtual Unpacked Galaxy 2020 event. It was part of Samsung’s line up of new devices that included the new Galaxy Note 20 series, Galaxy Tab S7 series, Galaxy Watch 3 and Galaxy Buds Live.

The Z Fold 2’s announcement was more a big tease as Samsung did not reveal its price or release date yet, it plans to reveal more during a second event on 1 September.

The Z Fold 2’s 7.6″ inner display offers a 120Hz refresh rate, much like the Galaxy Note 20 series and Galaxy Tab S7 series tablets. Samsung has done away with the strange notch the first Fold had, instead it has an Infinity-O display that appears more spacious, with minimal bezels and a tiny punch-hole for the selfie camera.

The interior display uses ultra-thin glass (UTG) that is less than 100 micrometres (μm) thick, thinner than a single strand of human hair. Not only is it slimmer, but it is also said to be more scratch-resistant compared to the previous generation plastic-based solution. 

Samsung has also resolved the biggest issue with the first Fold: the smaller cover display. The Z Fold 2 now has a larger 6.2″ cover display that makes the Z Fold 2 more usable like a normal smartphone when it is folded. Unlike the inner display, the cover display offers a regular 60Hz refresh rate.

The new Z Fold 2 also has a thinner body and it now has a smaller gap when the device is folded. The company said it has also made the hinge more durable and added “sweepers” inspired by a vacuum cleaner’s bristles that use carbon and nylon fibre to prevent dust and dirt from entering the hinge mechanism.

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For greater versatility, the new Fold borrows the Flex mode from the Galaxy Z Flip. The hinge uses CAM mechanisms to enable the new Fold to stay open at multiple angles. This allowed the Z Fold 2 to offer new usage possibilities including a self standing selfie setup and the ability to watch wide-screen movies from the cover itself.

Powering the device is a 4,500mAh dual intelligent battery that Samsung claims is able to last one full day of use. It also appears that the Z Fold 2 will have a side-mounted fingerprint reader.

In terms of colour options, the Z Fold 2 will come in Samsung’s signature colour for the year, Mystic Bronze as well in Mystic Black. Like the Galaxy Z Flip, Samsung is partnering with New York fashion house Thom Browne to deliver a limited Galaxy Z Fold 2 Thom Browne Edition.

There was no word about the Z Fold 2’s internal specs, though it has been speculated to use Qualcomm’s Snapdragon 865+ chipset. Samsung also did not offer any details about the cameras though it looks like it has the same triple camera setup as the Note 20 which has a 108MP main camera, a 12MP ultra-wide-angle lens and a 12MP periscope telephoto camera.  We will just have to wait until the next event to learn more about these details. 

In the U.S., Samsung has opened the Galaxy Z Fold 2 for reservation on its website. Those that reserve via the site will receive an email to pre-order the Z Fold 2 at a later date. 

While there is no price announced the new foldable smartphone, the first generation Fold retailed at RM8,388 for the 4G LTE model. Considering the features of the second-generation device, we can expect the Z Fold 2 to cost more.

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For more information go to the product page on Samsung’s website.

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